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little red cabbage; all about the last week.
Spinach; once or twice.
Mustard and cress, for salad; every week.
Rooted offsets, or slips of mint, balm, sage, rue, rosemary, &c.
Cabbage from the nursery-beds, for the main spring, and early summer crops; do this work when the ground is not wet and cloddy, but works freely.
Attend to neatness every where, and destroy vermin,
God Almighty first planted a garden; and, indeed, it is the purest of human pleasures; it is the greatest refreshment to the spirits of man, without which buildings and palaces are but gross handyworks. Bacun.
On Observing A Blossom On The First of February. Sweet flower I that peeping from thy russet stem
Unfoldest timidly, (for in strange sort
This dark, frieze-coated, hoarse, teetb-chat
tcring month Hath borrowed Zephyr's voice, and gazed upon
With blue voluptuous eye) alas poor flower!
Till disappointment come, and pelting wrong
Farewell, sweet blossom! better fate be thine
From anxious self, life's cruel taskmaster 1
• Domestic Gardener's Manual
The attempered organ, that even sadjest thoughts
Mix with some sweet sensations, like harsh tones
Played deftly on a soft-toned instrument.
The singing of birds before the springing of flowers, and the bursting of buds, comes like the music of a sweet band before a procession of loveliness. In our youth we were delighted with the voices, and forms, and plumage of these little creatures. One of the first desires of a child is for a bird. To catch a songster is a school-boy's great achievement. To have one in a cage, to tend upon it, change its water, give it fresh seeds, hang chickweed and groundsel, and thrust sugar between the wires, chirp, and encourage it to sing, are a little girl's chief delight.
In this month the birds flock in, fast heralding the spring. Young readers will like to know about them, and at convenient times their curiosity shall be indulged.
This beautiful and popular little bird — the red-breast—has a sweet melodious song, so free and shrill, that few can equal him.
In the winter, when food is scarce abroad, he comes to the door, enters the house with confidence, and, in hope of relief, becomes sociable and familiar. During the summer, when there is plenty abroad, and he is not pinched with cold, he often withdraws to solitary places, and loves to feed singly upon worms, ants and their eggs, and insects: yet many breed and nestle about farm-yards and out-houses, and pick crumbs thrown from the table, all the year round.
The male robin may be known by the red upon his breast being deeper than the female's, and going up farther upon the head; some say his legs are darker than the female's, and that he has a few gentlemanly hairs on each side of his bill. He is of a darker olive color upon the
• Extracted from '• The Poetical Works of S. T. Coleridge, including the dramas of Wallenstein, Remorse, and Zapolya," collected and elegantly printed in 3 vols, published by Pickering.
upper surface of his whole body, and the superior brightness of his red breast is a sure token.
The robin is about six inches long; the tail two and a half, and the bill a little more than half an inch.
Breeding time is about the end of April, or beginning of May. The female builds in a barn or out-house; sometimes in a bank or hedge; and likewise in the woods. Her nest is of coarse materials; the outside of dry green moss, intermixed with coarse wool, small sticks, straws, dried leaves, peelings frbm young trees, and other dried stuff; with a few horse-hairs withinside: its hollow is small, scarcely an inch in depth, and about three wide:, the complete nest weighs about eleven drams. She usually lays five or six eggs; sometimes not more than four, but never fewer; they are of a cream color, sprinkled all over with fine reddish-yellow spots, which at the large end are so thick, that they appear almost all in one.
Hatching generally takes place about the beginning of May. Young ones for caging are taken at ten or twelve days old; if they are left longer, they are apt to mope. They should be kept warm in a little basket, with hay at the bottom, and fed with the wood-lark's meat, or as young nightingales are reared. Their meat should be minced very small, and given but little at a time. When they are grown strong enough for the cage, it should be like the nightingale's or woodlark's, but rather closer wired, and with moss at the bottom. In all respects they are to be kept and ordered like the nightingale. When old enough to feed themselves, they may be tried with the woodlark's meat, which some robins like better than the nightingale's.
The robin is very subject to cramp and giddiness; for cramp give them a mealworm now and then; for the giddiness six or seven earwigs in a week. They greedily eat many kinds of insects which probably might be effectually given to relieve sickness, could they be conveniently procured, such as young smooth cater
fiillars; but a robin will not touch a lairy one; also ants, and some sorts of spiders: but no insect is more innocent, or agrees better with birds in general, than the meal-worm. The earwig is not, perhaps, so good. Yet the best way to prevent diseases in the robin is to keep him clean and warm, to let him always
have plenty of fresh water, wholesome food, and sometimes a little saffron or liquorice in his water, which will cheer him, make him long winded, and help him in his song.
Old robins, when caught and confined in a cage, regret the loss of liberty, frequently will not sing, and die from confinement. A young robin usually sings in a few days. One reared from the nest may be taught to pipe and whistle finely, but his natural song is more delightful, and, while in his native freedom, most delightful*
The snow has left the cottage top;
The thatch-moss grows in brighter green; And saves in quick succession drop.
Where grinning icicles have been;
In tubs set by the cottage door;
Plunge in the yard-pond, brimming o'er.
The sun peeps through the window-pane;
Which children mark with laughing eye: And in the wet street steal again.
To tell each other Spring is nigh: Then, as young hope the past rccals.
In playing groups they often draw, To build beside the sunny walls
Their spring time huts of sticks or straw
And oft in pleasure's dreams they hie
Round homesteads by the village side Scratching the hedgerow mosses by.
Where painted pooty shells abide; Mistaking oft the ivy spray
For leaves that come with budding Spring, And wond'ring, in their search for play.
Why birds delay to build and sing.
The mavis thrush with wild delight.
Mutters, to see the day so bright,
And oft Dame stops her buzzing wheel
Who tootles while he pecks his meal
From sweet-briar hips beside the door.
Clare i Shephai't Calendar.
February 1. Day breaks . . 5 30
sets . . . 4 33
Twilight ends . 6 30 The snow-drop, called the fair maid of
This day is so called, because in the papal church a mass was celebrated, and candles were consecrated, for the church processions.
To denote the custom and the day, a hand holding a torch was marked on the old Danish calendars.
Candlemas In Scotland.
At every school in the South of Scotland, the boys and girls look forward with as great anxiety for Candlemas Day as the children of merry England for their Christmas holidays. It is an entire day of relaxation, play, and festivity. On the evening preceding Candlemas Day, the school-master gives notice that tomorrow is their annual festival. The formal announcement is received with joy, and they hasten home to their fathers for their donations to the schoolmaster, called '• Candlemas bleeze," that all may be ready on the morrow. On the morrow all is anxious bustle and conjecture. Who is to be king 1 Who is to be queen? It is the only day in the year in which they hurry to school with eager pleasure. The master receives the "Candlemas bleeze" from each pupil with condescending and familiar kind.iess. Some bring sixpence, some a shilling, and others more, according to the circumstances of their parents. With the "bleeze" the master purchases a few bottles of whiskey, which is converted into punch, and this, with a quantity of biscuits, is for the entertainment of his youthful guests. The surplus of cash, after defraying all expenses, he retains as a present to himself. This, therefore, being in lieu of a "Christmass box," may be termed a "Candlemas box." The boy that brings the most "breeze" is crowned king; and, on the same ground, the girl with the largest portion of " breeze " is crowned queen, as distinctions of the highest honor for the most liberal gifts. To those illustrious personages the other youths in the school pay homage for the remainder of the festival.
The king and queen are installed by each being introduced to the other by the
* Fosbroke's British Mouachism, 60
schoolmaster; and they acknowledge the honor with a fond salute: both then receive a glass of punch, and pledge their worthy master. They next drink "long life and happy days to their loyal subjects," and are afterwards placed on an elevated seat, previously prepared, and called the throne. After the enthronement, the schoolmaster gives each scholar a glass of punch and a biscuit, and they all drink "long life, and a prosperous and happy reign to their most gracious sovereigns," at the same time making obeisance with their best bows. As long as the whiskey holds out, these testimonials of loyalty and attachment are repeated. The young ones get full of mirth and glee, and, after receiving their master's thanks for their kindness, they are finally dismissed with merry hearts, to relate their adventures at home.
It is a custom with many old country people in Scotland to prognosticate the weather of the coming season according to this master prognostication:—
If Can'lemat is fair and clear
On the truth of this distich they have no doubt. Should Candlemas day pass over without a shower of rain, or a fall of snow, their spirits droop: they conclude upon severe weather before spring is over, and they reckon upon heavy snow storms before the following Christmas; —if such is the case, ruin is inevitable! On the contrary, if Candlemas day is showery and tempestuous, they anticipate a fine summer, genial suns in autumn, and plenty of refreshment for man and beast. I have seen a farmer of the "Old School," rubbing his hands with glee during the dismal battling of the elements without, while the wind entered within through the crevices of the doors and casements of the latticed window, and his little children at the loud blasts that roared round the roof, ran for protection between the knees of their father, or hid their face in the lap of their mother. W hen the young ones were put to bed, the two old folks would set on the side of the Ingle Neuk, talking "o'th' days o' langsine," when they were bairns themselves, and confirming each other's belief in the old prognostication. Any one acquainted with the habits of the Scotch shepherds and peasantry will authenticate these facts as to Candlemas day
Blessing Candles At Rome.
This was seen by Lady Morgan in 1820. The ceremony takes place in the beautiful chapel of the Quirinal, where the pope himself officiates, and blesses, and distributes with his own hands, a candle to every person in the body of the church; each going individually and kneeling at the throne to receive it. The ceremony commences with the cardinals; then follow the bishops, prelati, canons, priors, abbots, priests, &c, down to the sacristans and meanest officers of the church. When the last of these has gotten his candle, the poor contervatori, the representatives of the Roman senate and people, receive theirs. This ceremony over, the candles are lighted, the pope is mounted in his chair and tarried in procession, with hymns chanting, round the antichapel; the throne is stripped of its splendid hangings; the pope and cardinals take off their gold and crimson dresses, put on their ordinary robes, and the usual mass of the morning is sung. The blessing of the candles takes place in all the parish churches.
Symbols Of the Hermetic Sciei.ce.
On the porticoes of the church of Notre Dame, at Paris, there are sculptured certain figures, which the adepts have deemed hieroglyphical of their art.
Golineau de Montluisant, a gentleman of the Pays de Chartres, an amateur of the hermetic science, explains these figures in the following manner. The Almighty Father, stretching out his arms, and holding an angel in each of his hands, represents the Creator, who derives from nothing the sulphur, and the mercury of life represented by the two angels. On the left side of one of the three doors are four human figures of natural size; the first has under his feet a flying dragon, biting its own tail. This dragon represents the philosopher's stone, composed of two substances, the fixed and the volatile. The throat of the dragon denotes the " fixed salt," which devours the " volatile," of which the slippery tale of the animal is a symbol. The second figure treads upon a lion, whose head is turned towards heaven. This lion is nothing but the "spirit of salt," which has a tendency to return to its sphere. The third has
under his feet a dog and a bitch, who are biting each other furiously, which signify the contention of the humid and the dry, in which the operation of the "magnum opus" almost entirely consists. The fourth figure is laughing at all around him, and thus represents those ignorant sophists who scoff at the hermetic science.
Below these large figures is that of a bishop, in an attitude of contemplation, representing William of Paris, a learned adept. On one of the pillars which separate the several doors is another bishop, who is thrusting his crosier into the throat of a dragon. The monster seems making an effort to get out of a bath, in which is the head of a king with a triple crown. This bishop represents the philosophical alchymist, and his crosier the hermetic art. The mercurial substance is denoted by the dragon escaping from his bath, as the sublimated mercury escapes from its vase. The crowned head is sulphur, composed of three substances, namely, the ethereal spirit, the nitrous salt, and the alkali.
Near one of the doors, on the right, are the five wise virgins holding out a cup, in which they receive something poured from above by a hand that comes out of a cloud. These represent the true philosophical chemists, the friends of nature, who re-, ceive from heaven the ingredients proper for making gold. On the left are five foolish virgins, holding their cup turned down towards the ground. These are symbols of the innumerable multitude ot ignorant pretendets.
There are many other figures, which our adept makes use of, in order to explain all the secrets of alchymy. But those who examine this portal with other eyes find nothing in the figures relating to the philosopher's stone. The person treading under his feet a dragon is the conqueror of Satan. The other figures represent David, Solomon, Melchisedec, the Sibyls, Sec. A large statue of stone, which formerly was situated at the entrance of the Parvis Notre Dame, and which was taken for a statue of Mercury, was pro bably the principal cause of the first explanation. But, however that may have been, it is certain that students and reputed adepts in the science of transmutation and the pabulum of life have regarded these sculptures as hieroglyphics of the great mystery'
History of Paris, I. >.
This is the representation of an old finely carved oak chair in the possession of a gentleman to whom it was presented by the possessor of Penshurst, the venerable seat of the Sidney family, in the county of Kent. The height of the chair is three feet eleven inches; its width one foot ten inches. From tradition at Penshunt, it was the chair of Sir Philip Sidney—" the delight and admiration of the age of Elizabeth"—in which he customarily sat, and perhaps wrote "the best pastoral romance, and one of the most popular books of its age," the celebrated "Arcadia;" a work so much read and admired by the ladies at court, in the reign of the "virgin queen," that it passed through fourteen editions, and laid Shakspeare under obligations to it for his play of " Pericles." This name, it is contended, Shakspeare derived from "Pyroclt»," the hero of the "Arcadia." Many
incidents in the play and trie romance are the same; —" that Shakspeare long preserved his attachment to the Arcadia is evident from his 1 King Lear;' where the episode of Gloster and his sons is plainly copied from the first edition of the Arcadia."
By admirers, then, of the character of Sir Philip Sidney, who "was the ornament of the university," and "was also the ornament of the court;" who "appeared with equal advantage in a field of battle or in a tournament; in a private conversation among his friends or in a public character as an ambassador;" the print of his chair will be looked on with interest.
The chair of Shakspeare, the illustrious contemporary of Sidney and the admirer of the " Arcadia," is alleged to have passed into foreign exile from his house at Strat